Recently I contributed to Liz Davis' Collective Intelligence wiki with some thoughts about how social networking tools have affected my practices as a learner and teacher. Here's another way the internet is changing my perspective.
Quaker Jonah McDonald was moved by the tragedy of Katrina's aftermath, and decided to go on a personal pilgrimmage. He raised close to $8,000 dollars.
Coudal Partners started thinking about making a short film, and recruited executive producers via their email list and website. The film has now been completed and is available for sale. (Executive producers got a special preview copy and other schwag from Coudal Partners.)
For Christmas this past year, I gave money to Aparicia Ramirez in honor of my brother Steve. Kiva.org helped me find her.
Artist David Horvitz creates artistic collaborations with his viewers... for a pre-determined price.
Violinist Robert Thompson wondered about the reliability of an organization that was collecting money to help support the purchase of livestock for impoverished farmers. His questions ended up leading to a kind of quest (the movie is about 8 minutes long):
And now blogger/illustrator Jen Lemen is heading to Rwanda to connect with her friend Odette's children and to make a difference in girls' lives there. I have been reading Jen's blog and admiring both her art and her spirit for quite some time. I've never met her. I have no overt connection to her. But I feel a sense of connection to her because of her clarity of spirit, transmitted to me via the power of the internet, and I'm about to act on it.
I am making everyone in my family a lunch every day this week so that I can toss a little "lunch money" Jen's way. (You can add your name to the list of folks providing financial support via the J. Lemen -> Rwanda widget in my side bar at right.) Alternatively or additionally, you could spend some time in the next few days creating some hand-written messages of hope for the girls via HopeRevo. What are you doing Sunday afternoon? Wanna come over and make one of these cards? How about after Quaker Meeting?